Tag Archives: Entrepreneurship




Pass your knowledge and experience with the turkey at Thanksgiving

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

One of my favorite clients spent several years writing his about his childhood stories, and he paired them with photos from his youth. He hired an editor to tweak his drafts and then published a book that he gave to his children and grandchildren at the holidays. With remarkable new technology, books can easily and inexpensively be printed, so the only major investment was the time dedicated to this work of love.  I was fortunate enough to read the book and was in awe of how many valuable lessons were shared in this beautiful gift. This is a very close family with strong generational relationships and open communication, but this book full of detailed stories and pictures added so much more to the orally transmitted tales. What a gold mine.  My grandparents passed away before I was born, so I wasn’t fortunate enough to know them.  I’ve read many stories about the migration from Ireland to America, but I’d love to know how my grandparents did it and how that helped shaped me.

Not everyone can sit down and write a memoir, and there are easier ways to strengthen family connections and pass valuable lessons to the next generation. Family trivia games, reenactments of old stories, tried and true traditions, and stimulating conversation can help you discover more about your children and grandchildren’s interests and passions. The simple act of being genuinely interested is key.

Thanksgiving Cartoon

This year at Thanksgiving, in addition to passing the turkey and potatoes, pass them an opportunity to connect with you by giving them the good fortune to make a gift to a charity that fits their passion and addresses the issues they care about.  Several of our clients have set up and contributed to a Donor Advised Charitable Fund (DACF) this year for that purpose.  One couple wants to give each of their 11 grandchildren the opportunity to donate $500 per year over the next 5 years, so they added $20,000 of appreciated stock to the DACF. The contributed stock plus future earnings should be enough for the 55 gifts that will be made to charities over the next 5 years.  The only requirements these grandparents made was that before a donation was made, each child had to research and visit the charity and report back to the grandparents why that charity was chosen and how the funds would help the organization or cause. We assisted the clients with whole process, from setting up the DACF to offering checklists for evaluating charities.  It is much easier than it sounds.

Engaging your family with this process will bring the family together and help you build a legacy.  It might also be entertaining when they come to you with charities like “The Irish Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals” or “Stop Bieber.”  Yes, those are actual non-profit organizations, so be prepared to probe your grandchildren about the criteria of worthy causes.

Your goals and dreams change. Financial products do not. Clients work with us because we don’t sell products – we create customized plans based on each client’s unique goals, and we continuously reevaluate client plans to ensure they are aligned with changing needs.  Our clients rely on us to protect their futures, and we take their trust to heart.

Tim Scannell, CPA, CFPTM provides Personal and Business Tax Planning, Estate Planning, Investment Management, and Generational Wealth management to his clients. “We deliver proactive, objective advice, plans and solutions enabling our clients to reach their unique family goals.”

Documenting your Estate Plan is just the beginning!

Monday, July 7, 2014

I’m often asked if wills and trusts can be prepared online without the help of an attorney.  Creating wills and trusts should not be considered a boiler plate process. The attorneys I work with add great value to financial planning because most invest time in understanding family dynamics before drafting a will. Once the plan is in place, attorneys can also help prepare beneficiaries to receive wealth.  Online legal forms do not guide beneficiaries and future generations toward wise decision making and long-term goal setting. It takes trusted advisors to facilitate careful planning.

At a recent meeting with clients, their CPA and attorney, my goal was to document the clients’ Generational Wealth plan, and I thought about the clients’ complex family. My clients recognized that sometimes children and other beneficiaries know more than we give them credit for and should be part of the conversation.  Fortunately in this instance, the children were involved in the planning process, and communication among the family members was clear, transparent, and collaborative.

When I interview new clients, I often find that their past encounters in signing their wills, trusts and other planning documents was the end of a long emotional process.   As we work with clients in the planning process, we stress that it should be the beginning of a relationship. Documenting your plan is like preparing to go fly fishing.  Before heading to the river, I spend a lot of time making sure I have the right equipment to be ready for all the variables including water flow and depth, temperature, wind, sun, and a host of other temperamental issues. When I arrive at the river, the fun starts and the work really begins: finding the fish, presenting my lures, and feeling the exhilaration of catch and release. Similarly after documenting the generational wealth plan, we begin working with the next generation and focus on helping them get ready to receive wealth in a way that will improve their lives.  I’ve learned that this process requires flexibility, communication, excellent listening skills, and an awareness that no two people are the same.

Andertoons Cartoon

When offering Generational Wealth Management services to clients, we focus on preparing each unique beneficiary to receive wealth because everyone needs guidance and skills to make sure the wealth fosters the development of lifetime goals.  For your beneficiaries to catch their personal, professional, financial or other trophy fish, the work starts after you have signed your wills and trusts.  Investing your time in that process and getting all of your advisors involved will help beneficiaries catch their unique dream fish and give them control over how they catch it, choosing the rivers and streams or oceans they fish in.

Tim Scannell, CPA, CFP TM provides Personal and Business Tax Planning, Estate Planning, Investment Management, and Generational Wealth management to his clients. “We deliver proactive, objective advice, plans and solutions enabling our clients to reach their unique family goals “.

I’m Mastering Twitter for my Kids!

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

This week my self-assigned project was to master Twitter, to become an expert tweeter as they say.  Before you jump to the conclusion that I had the urge to send the world a “selfie” or to start following the daily minutiae of my favorite Hollywood stars, let me set the record straight!  I’m working to master Twitter as another way to connect with my Millennial kids.

The “experts” tell me that Twitter is now the Millennial generation’s preferred means of communication between themselves and the world. Texting is so “yesterday”, so don’t try to email your kids and get a response this week.  Just as they fled Facebook as their parents and grandparents joined, once we figured out how to text, they felt it was time to move on.  All five of my children fall into the Generation Y or Millennial’s category, so if I want to know what’s happening in their lives outside of the holiday dinners, I decided I needed to dive in deep.

After much reading, internet searching and tweeting this week, I’m convinced they have found a way to keep us at bay.  The risk that we will master this medium and drive the kids out is very low. Several years ago, I created a Twitter account for business and now have a list of people and companies I follow and some who follow me. I have sent and received many tweets and re-tweets, but this week I thought I’d work to figure out how this generation uses Twitter to connect and communicate.  My research reminded me of an experience while in Germany after having taken four years of German class in high School.  I made my best effort to order a meal speaking German and the local waiter replied in English, “Thank you for trying, now what can I get you?” I understand the Twitter language, but I can’t speak it.

My impression of Twitter is that millions of people are standing in a room reciting 140 character tidbits of what interests them at that point in time, sometimes with links to photos, videos, articles and blogs referenced in that tweet.  “You Gotta see this”, “5 Ways to….”, “What’s with ….”,  or “My dog just….” seem to be popular.  I visualize a room full of people announcing their topic, looking up at the sky, making no eye contact, wondering who will hear.  It reminded me of when I cast a lure into the water with the  hope that a big Northern hears it, sees it, and takes a bite.  I know this works for fish if you have a good lure, but how does it work with communication?

I’m convinced I’m missing something, so I’ve extended my research deadline by a few more weeks. Ironically this blog will be tweeted in the hope that someone will hear my call for help and send me advice. I don’t plan on ending the project until I figure this out.  Why?  Because any way I can connect more with my children can’t be bad (until they realize I’m a Twitter master and move on the next medium).

Twitter Master 1

#AtThePark Playing?

When offering Generational Wealth Management services to clients, we focus on preparing their heirs to receive wealth because they need experience and skills so the wealth fosters their development and lifetime goals.  For your beneficiaries to catch their personal, professional, financial or other trophy fish, create more connections with them, even if you have to learn to tweet!  You will help them catch their dream fish and give them control over how they catch it, choosing the rivers and streams or oceans they fish in.

Tim Scannell, CPA, CFP TM provides Personal and Business Tax Planning, Estate Planning, Investment Management, and Generational Wealth management to his clients. “We deliver proactive, objective advice, plans and solutions enabling our clients to reach their unique family goals “.

Don’t Jeopardize Entry Level Opportunities

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

This week, President Obama directed the Labor Department to create rules aimed at increasing overtime pay for salaried employees.  As I read about his plan, I drifted back to 1984 after graduating from the University of Illinois, starting work in downtown Chicago, and leaping into the vast ocean they call a career.  I was suddenly left to create your own path.   I had worked many hourly-rate jobs (and a classic paper route) to that point, but now I was entering the “salaried, professional” world.

I focused all efforts during my final two years at U of I on an accounting degree, with a goal of becoming a CPA.  It sounds odd as I say it now, but prior to working as a CPA in an entry level position, I had never actually known or really talked to a CPA. Internships weren’t part of my recommended curriculum, and I worked various campus jobs to cover my tuition.  Finding mentors to help guide me thorough my career options in this mysterious sea of opportunities was a major goal of mine at that time.

As I look back, the most valuable lessons at my first job out of college occurred when I arrived early, went to lunch with co-workers and stayed late, beyond the traditional eight-hour work day.  I traveled often to the on-site audits and shared many meals, including dinners, with clients and co-workers.  Valuable time was spent talking to and networking with peers, managers and clients who shared their experiences and guided me through conversation, advice and great examples.  It was during a “working-dinner” conversation with my senior manager at Ernst & Whinney that I decided the CPA career path options were not for me.

Proponents of the new overtime rules will tell me that I was cheated by not getting paid for those extra hours beyond the forty per week and my “Millennial” kids will tell me that I was exploited by “The Man.”  Thirty years in business tells me otherwise.   Had my firm been required to pay me for those hours, they would have eliminated the early mornings, client meals and “working-dinners” that gave me the mentorship, networking opportunities and career knowledge I needed very much at that time.  I wouldn’t have met the three people who have been the greatest business mentors of my life and who taught me the value of entrepreneurship and hard work. My goal in 1984 was to work in an entry level position where I could learn, practice my skills, and find great mentors and role models who could help me advance my career, so I could support my family.  My goal in 1984 wasn’t to be a staff accountant for life

Career Networking

The Wealth Management processes for our client families use many of those “entry-level” lessons I learned back then.  Often, an entry level or even unpaid job is where children and grandchildren gain the confidence, mentorship, skilled networking opportunities and experience they need to ultimately receive wealth in a way that fosters their development and lifetime goals.  I advise my clients to mentor their loved ones and pass on their expertise; it is the greatest form of sharing wealth.

For the beneficiaries of your wealth to catch their personal, professional, financial or other trophy fish, create opportunities for them to find the mentors, experience and advice that will help them catch their dream fish. More importantly, they will have control over how they catch it, choosing the rivers and streams or oceans they fish in.

Tim Scannell, CPA, CFP TM provides Personal and Business Tax Planning, Estate Planning, Investment Management, and Generational Wealth management to his clients. “We deliver proactive, objective advice, plans and solutions enabling our clients to reach their unique family goals “.

Does the receiver know the play?

Monday, January 13, 2014

Like many Americans this weekend, I sat down with friends to watch a few NFL playoff games.  Although my favorite Chicago Bears fell short of making the playoffs this year, I still needed to get my football fix and collect the many stories of amazing catches and comebacks that will be shared this week at lunches, around the office and in client meetings.

 

As I watched Andrew Luck’s Colts battle Tom Brady’s Patriots, I marveled at how these incredible quarterbacks manage and lead successful teams to victory.  I see similar qualities in the great business owners I work with who visualize, plan, and lead great companies to success.  Brady and Luck have much in common with many of my clients who successfully combat adversity and overcome challenges to create and manage their family wealth based on their unique family goals.  I see myself on the sidelines and in the huddle with my clients, proactively offering independent advice and solutions to advance their family goals and protect them from taxes, market risks, and storms on the horizon.

 

These two quarterbacks, like the family leaders I work with, get the limelight as they should.  My thoughts during the game, though, were mostly with the Colts and Patriots’ receivers playing on the field.  What if Andrew Luck and the Colts’ coaches didn’t tell the receivers what plays they were calling? Would they know where to go to catch the pass?  If Tom Brady called an audible as a result of an impending rush, but didn’t tell the receivers why and where to go, would the play work?  It seems absurd to think that any team has a chance of success without training their receivers to know the play, run a route, catch a pass, and identify a defensive scheme, yet this is how most families prepare to transfer their wealth.

 

Advisors often create strong teams of CPA’s, attorneys, bankers, insurance professionals, investment managers and other advisers to prepare great plans for the smooth and efficient transfer of assets to beneficiaries.  Yet many allocate very little time and resources to make sure that the ultimate beneficiaries know the plan, are ready to receive wealth and are in the best position for success as they receive it. ”Shirtsleeves to shirtsleeves in three generations” is how Americans describe the high failure rate of wealth transfers, and the biggest cause of that failure is a lack of preparing heirs to receive the wealth.

 

Working with the Institute for Preparing Heirs, we help our clients start the conversations among family members, and we give clients the tools needed to prepare heirs to receive and manage wealth in a manner that fosters their development and lifetime goals. Family meetings are tools that can promote communication and trust among family members and can be used to teach financial responsibility to heirs.  Contact me for a sample “Family Meeting” agenda.

 

To catch the personal, professional, financial or other trophy fish you want for your family, make sure your heirs are prepared to receive your family wealth.  Doing so will give your family more control over the river and streams or oceans you fish in.

 

Tim Scannell, CPA, CFP TM provides Personal and Business Tax Planning, Estate Planning, Investment Management, and Generational Wealth management to his clients. “We deliver proactive, objective advice, plans and solutions enabling our clients to reach their unique family goals “.

 

Scannell Wealth Management is a team of investment professionals registered with HighTower Securities, LLC, member FINRA, MSRB and SIPC & HighTower Advisors, LLC a registered investment advisor with the SEC. All securities are offered through HighTower Securities, LLC and advisory services are offered through HighTower Advisors, LLC.

Nurture the Spark in People Around You

Friday, September 6, 2013

As I watched Brendan perform in his last Northwestern University Titanic improv show, I had so many feelings and emotions. Was it really four years ago when Nancy and I left Brendan at Northwestern  to start a new chapter in his life? Could it be ten years ago when Brendan was in seventh grade that we drove him to Chicago for Saturday improv classes at Second City in Chicago?  We can take credit for seeing the spark and finding the kindling, but Brendan worked the fire like an Eagle Scout. We were just one source of oxygen or kindling that helped his performing spark turn to a burning desire. His respect now for how hard it can be to achieve success is a result of the path he chose to take over the past ten years.

 

I read in the book Freakenomics that you need to work at something for 10,000 hours before it becomes second nature. Brendan and his Puma Mama teammates had definitely invested the 10,000 hours plus over the past four years to make last Friday night the best performance we’ve seen for this team.  It looks so natural and easy, yet having watched Brendan learn his craft over the past ten years, I know that’s not the case. I’m excited to watch the next chapter of his story as he begins another 10,000 hour track in Los Angeles with a few of his Titanic teammates.

 

Reflecting on Brendan’s passion and hard work, I think about the clients I’ve worked with as they move from one chapter to another in their lives.  I work with clients as they get married, start careers and families, save for their children’s college, plan for and maintain financial independence and then ultimately pass their wealth to their families and favorite charities.  I help clients as they start, grow and transform their businesses, and I help them pass the business to family and key employees when they are ready to retire.   As they enter each stage of life, closing one chapter and starting a new on, the tools and techniques used to help them achieve their goals change, just as the world, laws, and markets change around us.  I give clients the tools that help spark their unique passions and goals, but ultimately it is the clients’ perseverance and hard work that makes them successful.

 

When planning for the transfer of wealth to the next generation, often the biggest fear is how children and grandchildren will respond to receiving wealth.  Do they appreciate how much effort went into creating wealth and will they respect it?  Will the inheritance they receive be used to improve their lives or will it hurt them?  The key to successful generational wealth preservation is establishing processes aimed at discovering the unique spark in each member of the family and then making plans to have the wealth be the kindling needed to light that spark.

 

Keep your eyes open to discovering the spark in the people around you.  Doing so will help them catch the personal, professional, financial or other trophy fish they are after.  More importantly, they will have control over how they catch it, choosing the rivers and streams or oceans they fish in.

 

Tim Scannell, CPA, CFPTM provides Personal and Business Tax Planning, Estate Planning, Investment Management, and Generational Wealth management to his clients. “We strive to deliver transparent, proactive, independent, and comprehensive planning and communications to the families we work for”.

 

Scannell Wealth Management is a team of investment professionals registered with HighTower Securities, LLC, member FINRA, MSRB and SIPC & HighTower Advisors, LLC a registered investment advisor with the SEC. All securities are offered through HighTower Securities, LLC and advisory services are offered through HighTower Advisors, LLC.

The Power Of Fishing

Monday, June 17, 2013

During a recent estate planning meeting with a business owner client, we spent most of our time reviewing the complex estate and tax planning techniques we had implemented.  Over the past two years, we worked hard to make sure their family’s wealth would eventually benefit their children, grandchildren, future generations and favorite charities.  As I completed the technical portion of the review, we shifted the conversation to what is an important part of the planning process that most people don’t consider.

 

Most clients I work with want to know how they can help their beneficiaries respect money and use it for good and ask how to protect future generations from being harmed by the wealth they will receive. Families ask how they can pass their experiences, knowledge and core beliefs to future generations and selected charities in a way that creates a lasting legacy.  To accomplish that goal, there needs to be processes in place to help clients and their ultimate beneficiaries better understand each other.  With the complexities that families come with, this is a challenge but exciting when it works.

 

One tool we recently added to client processes was created by Dan Gediman, Founder and Executive Director of This I Believe (TIB), an organization that “collects and shares core personal philosophies of people from all walks of life”.  As is best said on their web site “By asking individuals to write and share their personal philosophies, This I Believe hopes to encourage people to express the core principles that guide their daily lives, and to develop acceptance of—and even respect for—beliefs different from one’s own”.

 

We use many of the TIB tools to help bridge the knowledge and understanding gap between the family members that accumulated wealth and those that are to inherit it. Would understanding what your children and grand children believe help you when deciding how and when you want to transfer your business, real estate, or other assets to them?  Would understanding your core beliefs and hearing your stories of the struggles you went through to build your wealth give your beneficiaries more respect for that wealth?  My 28 years of experience managing wealth for clients tells me the answer to both questions is a resounding yes.

 

As a passionate fisherman, I loved reading the TIB essay The Power of Fishing submitted by Johnnie Barmore. As you listen to Johnnie read her essay, think how great it would be to know that personal information about your family when planning your estate. When I listen to the essay, I want to go fishing :)

Wealth Management, Fly Fishing, Entrepreneurship, Investment Planning, Estate Planning, Tim Scannell, Valparaiso, Hightower Advisors

I Love fishing in Canada!

Write and share your This I Believe essay and encourage your family to do the same because understanding each others core principals will help families successfully transfer wealth.  Sharing your core beliefs will help your heirs catch the personal, professional, financial or other trophy fish they are after.  More importantly, they will have control over how they catch it, choosing the rivers and streams or oceans they fish in.

 

Tim Scannell, CPA, CFPTM provides Personal and Business Tax Planning, Estate Planning, Investment Management, and Generational Wealth management to his clients. “We strive to deliver transparent, proactive, independent, and comprehensive planning and communications to the families we work for”.

 

Scannell Wealth Management is a team of investment professionals registered with HighTower Securities, LLC, member FINRA, MSRB and SIPC & HighTower Advisors, LLC a registered investment advisor with the SEC. All securities are offered through HighTower Securities, LLC and advisory services are offered through HighTower Advisors, LLC.

 

HighTower Advisors LLC, its affiliates and HighTower Advisor’s Financial Advisors do not provide tax or legal advice.  You need to consult your legal and tax professional when making any investment.  

Who is up for Selling Hotdogs on the Beach

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

So there I was ready to teach a class full of 4th graders about entrepreneurship.  I had carefully prepared my presentation, but as I heard the teacher instructing the students to listen to me for the next few hours, I thought she was making a big mistake.  What do I know about 4th graders other than I was one 41 years ago!  As the 26 students looked at me, I wondered if I would connect with at least one future entrepreneur in the group.

I was intrigued when I first learned about the Junior Achievement Our Region program because it uses hands-on activities that introduce students to entrepreneurship with a secondary focus on social studies, geography, business, economics, ethics, writing and math.  I wanted to volunteer, but I wondered what I was in for when those 52 eyes stared up at me.

The fun began when we played the “Hot Dog Stand” game.  We reviewed the basics such as how important it is for businesses to make money, and we had a lively discussion about what businesses do with the money they make. Then I separated them into groups of five to figure out how to sell hotdogs at the beach. The nine-year-olds fascinated me as I watched them discover all the tasks involved in selling a simple hotdog. With the profits, most agreed that they should buy more hot dogs to sell the next day, but a few chose to buy iPhones or shoes and saw the consequences.

The kids identified why business owners need to find employees with good people skills, pay them fairly, and need to be good and ethical community members. The students also learned how pricing, marketing and food costs affect profit and the ability to support families.  For a few in the group, the hot dog stand became personal as they shared stories about their parents who worked so hard in their businesses.  When I started the program, I hoped to connect to just one aspiring entrepreneur, but the children taught me that I had underestimated them.  I saw the entrepreneur spark in most of the kids that day, and I hope I fed the flames!

I spend most days preparing, implementing, monitoring and adjusting comprehensive plans to manage wealth that my clients have accumulated.  We navigate complicated tax rules, law changes and volatile markets for clients and proactively adjust their plans accordingly, so they can live independently and pass wealth to their family and favorite charities.  We offer programs like Our Region to our clients’ children and grandchildren to prepare them for inheriting the wealth their parents and grandparents have accumulated.  As these children learn how hard it is to earn, accumulate and then keep wealth, they will be better prepared to inherit it.

At the head of the class, I listened to 4th graders talking about landscaping, lumber, food, shipping and other businesses they wanted to start.  If this class has anything to say about it, our future is bright if the youth find mentors who can help them navigate the complications of business. When you see the entrepreneurship spark, give it what it needs to nurture that burning desire as early as possible. If we have more entrepreneurs creating jobs, more people will catch their personal, professional, financial or other trophy fish they are going after, and more importantly, have control over how they catch it, choosing the rivers and streams they fish in.

Tim Scannell, CPA, CFPTM provides Personal and Business Tax Planning, Estate Planning, Investment Management, and Generational Wealth management to his clients. “We strive to deliver transparent, proactive, independent, and comprehensive planning and communications to the families we work for”.

Entrepreneurs will make your day!

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

While vacationing recently in Steamboat Springs, Colorado, I wanted to test my skiing skills on Mt. Warner.   By chance, I stumbled across the One Stop Ski Shop in downtown Steamboat, and I met a group of expert ski entrepreneurs.  John fitted me for ski equipment in a way that displayed his passion for skiing and his desire to make sure I got the most of my skiing experience.  I sensed that the owner and his two employees relish their independence in running a business that is in tune with their outdoor lifestyle.   Their web states, “We’re not greedy. We aren’t in this to get rich; we’re in this so we can live here and ski a lot, so if you spend your dough with us, we get to eat occasionally!”  So I helped feed them that day. :)  Wealth Management, Fly Fishing, Entrepreneurship, Investment Planning, Estate Planning, Tim Scannell, Valparaiso, Hightower Advisors!

Twelve inches of new snow arrived that night and snow was expected to fall all the next day. Armed with new ski equipment and very little skill, the next morning I stood in line for the first gondola ride to the top of mountain.  Friends who are more expert skiers took the day off because they prefer “visibility” when they ski (silly).

As I rode the chair lift to the top of the mountain, the snowfall was thick and blinding.  I could see only one, maybe two skiers in the chairs in front of me.  As I exited the chair at the top of the mountain, I could hear more skiers than I could see. The temperature was cold, but the sweat caused by my anticipation and excitement kept my gloves toasty warm.  Whether due to bravery or ignorance, I started down my first of many runs that day with almost child-like glee. I skied Mt. Warner for the next six hours, and the whole time, I was engulfed in adrenaline, laughter, terror, excitement, fear and lots of fun. John’s tips and recommended equipment made the difference.  I’d had my best ski experience ever because of a chance connection with a passionate entrepreneur and my openness to his ideas.

I’ve crossed paths with avid entrepreneurs like John more times than I can count, and I learn something positive from each encounter. I recently prepared a comprehensive estate and income tax plan for a business owner who introduced me to an idea that will enable me to help clients teach their children how to handle inherited wealth.  In the 26 years I’ve assisted families pass wealth to the next generations and favored charities, I’ve learned that the primary reason why some plans fail is lack of processes needed to transfer the experience and knowledge needed to receive, protect and grow the wealth that is inherited.  My client gave me another tool that I will now pass to my clients because I was open to learning new ideas.

To catch the personal, professional, financial or other trophy fish you are going after, keep your eyes and ears open to new ideas, especially when you run across a passionate entrepreneur. Each mentoring experience will help you determine the best way to catch that fish. And as an entrepreneur yourself, you will have control over how you catch it, choosing the rivers and streams or oceans you fish in.

Tim Scannell, CPA, CFPTM provides Personal and Business Tax Planning, Estate Planning, Investment Management, and Generational Wealth management to his clients. “We strive to deliver transparent, proactive, independent, and comprehensive planning and communications to the families we work for”.

Scannell Wealth Management is a team of investment professionals registered with HighTower Securities, LLC, member FINRA, MSRB and SIPC & HighTower Advisors, LLC a registered investment advisor with the SEC. All securities are offered through HighTower Securities, LLC and advisory services are offered through HighTower Advisors, LLC.

 

HighTower Advisors LLC, its affiliates and HighTower Advisor’s Financial Advisors do not provide tax or legal advice.  You need to consult your legal and tax professional when making any investment. 

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Should we accept the way the ball bounces?

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

This week I read The Icarus Deception, a great book by Seth Godin. In the book, Godin argues that there are a number of “rules” passed on to us by society that aren’t necessarily good guides as we navigate our rapidly changing world.  They might also be harmful tools to share with the next generation as they compete in this global information economy.  As I read the book, I thought about words of wisdom that my parents passed to me like “better safe than sorry” or “good things come to those that wait”. While some big fish might swim to your boat and take your lure, is that the best strategy?

Most of what I know about fishing and hunting I’ve learned from my great friend Buzz.  When fishing with Buzz in Canada, I’ve watched him change lures and cast a dozen times before I get my first lure in the water.  He has a great deal of patience, but he would never wait for good things to happen to him. He has a vision of what he wants to catch and will not wait for a fish to come by his line. Buzz will actively change strategies to find and catch his trophy fish.  You have to be quick to keep up with him, but if you are, you will typically be where the fish are. While it is possible that he misses trophy fish by changing lures or moving to different locations too quickly, my experience with Buzz tells me his proactive style creates success on the water, and his fishing journey are certainly more exciting than others’.

Twenty-seven years of planning for clients’ wealth has taught me that good things don’t necessarily come to those who wait to properly plan.  Clients’ needs and goals change from year to year as they pass through different stages of life.  Plans originated at the start of your career cannot possibly address all the issues you face as you look to retire.  New laws that impact your goals are added and changed every year, so plans need to be updated as laws, tax rules and financial markets change.  I have witnessed the struggles family members face because parents waited too long to make their plans that would help their family get prepared to inherit wealth. Moreover, if you aren’t adjusting your income and estate tax plan to respond to IRS rule changes, you will unnecessarily transfer wealth from your family to the IRS.

As I look at the cartoon below, I think about the risks in following someone else’s path, having no path at all or waiting for luck to come your way  Should you just keep your nose to the grindstone and accept the way the ball bounces?  I don’t think so.  To catch the personal, professional, financial or other trophy fish you are going after, don’t wait for good things to happen.  Proactively step out of your comfort zone to prepare and implement a plan to catch your dream fish.  A plan will give you more control over how you catch it and the rivers and streams or oceans you fish in.

Wealth Management, Fly Fishing, Entrepreneurship, Investment Planning, Estate Planning, Tim Scannell, Valparaiso, Hightower Advisors!

Tim Scannell, CPA, CFPTM provides Personal and Business Tax Planning, Estate Planning, Investment Management, and Generational Wealth management to his clients. “We strive to deliver transparent, proactive, independent, and comprehensive planning and communications to the families we work for”.

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Scannell Wealth Management Group is registered with HighTower Securities, LLC, member FINRA, MSRB and SIPC, and with HighTower Advisors, LLC, a registered investment advisor with the SEC. Securities are offered through HighTower Securities, LLC; advisory services are offered through HighTower Advisors, LLC.

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This document was created for informational purposes only; the opinions expressed are solely those of Scannell Wealth Management Group, and do not represent those of HighTower Advisors, LLC, or any of its affiliates.